Academic work


  • In September 2019, SA Bliss began her post-doctoral project for 2019-2021 at the University of Regina in the Media, Arts, and Performance faculty. Her post-doc project is titled: Improvised Soundscapes for Transformation: A Sonic Ethnographic Study of Gong Masters and Their Social Spaces. This study is a cross-cultural look at “What is going on?” in Gong teachers spaces and how Gong may afford transformation individually, socially, and environmentally. If you have interest in being involved in her study, please contact SA Bliss –
  • In 2019, she earned a PhD from the Faculty of Education at York University in Toronto, Canada. Her project was a cross-cultural ethnographic study of yoga and meditation teachers in Chile, Canada, and India. She explored how yoga and meditation is a social practice or type of socially situated literacy. She continues to query possibilities in what she terms ‘spatial literacy’ – reading self, others, and contextual environments.
  • Her 2018 article in Educational Studies (PDF here) presents data from ethnographic study at an urban ashram in Canada querying the role of silence and mantra in every day living.
  • Her 2017 article in Childhood Education (PDF here) explores curiosity and experience of shunyata (emptiness/fullness) for educators of young children.
  • In 2017, after receiving York University funding, she co-chaired and organized a pan-university conference for graduate students for Canada150@York. The Graduate Student Research Conference: Visions, Collaborations, and Transformations was attended by over 150 people.

Published works:

Bliss, S.A. (2018). Tuning out of this world: Silence and mantra at an urban ashram in Zygmunt Bauman’s liquid modernity. Educational Studies – Special Issue ‘Echoes, Reverberations, Silences, and Noise: Sonic Possibilities in Education’ (54)4, 448-464. PDFhere

Bliss, S.A. (2017). Exploring shunyata (emptiness) and the cultivation of mindful practices: Educators finding their zero-point balance. Childhood Education (93)2, 114-118. PDFhere

Bliss, S.A. and Husband, M. (2017). Sexuality in school: The limits of education – Book Review. McGill Journal of Education (52)3, 805-808. Link to the Review

Bliss, S.A. (2016) Possibilities in transformative learning: Facing radically passive teachers including artwork, the breath, and shunyata (emptiness). Conference Proceedings: Transformative Learning Network Conference, Tacoma, WA.

Oral papers and workshops at conferences:


  • Heightened Awareness Through Improvisational Soundscapes. UBC Colloquium 2019: Agile Futures – Approaching Improvisation, Western Front, Vancouver, Canada.
  • Recasting Mindfulness-based Practices as a Spatial Model of Socially Situated Literacy: An Ethnography of Meditation and Yoga Teachers in Chile, Canada, and India. CSSE (Canadian Society for the Study of Education), UBC, Vancouver, Canada.
  • Internal Environment as First Learning and Teaching Environment. AERA (American Educational Research Association) in Toronto, Canada. Presentation alongside York University Education colleagues in a panel entitled: Deconstructing Knowledge in Post Truth Learning Environments, Toronto, Canada.
  • Querying Sound and Silence as ‘Resonant Literacy’. Rosa Bruno-Jofre Symposium in Education: Beyond Themes, Queen’s University, Kingston, Canada.
  • Embodied Learning with Sound and Silence: The Body as a Resonant Gong (The Body as an Instrument). Provoking Curriculum Conference, University of Regina, Regina, Canada.


  • Engaging Our Internal Hum and Using Our Voices as Instruments of Change. Teaching in Focus Conference, York University, Toronto, Canada.
  • First Interiority, Then Exteriority: Recasting Mindfulness-based Practices as a Contemplative Model of Socially Situated Literacy. AERA (American Educational Research Association), New York, New York, USA.


  • ‘Tricked’ and ‘Trumped’ by the Lack of Difficult Phenomena in Picturebooks: Querying Disasters and Death. Bergamo Conference on Curriculum Theory and Classroom Practice, Dayton, Ohio, USA.
  • Tuning Out of This World: Silence and Mantra in Zygmunt Bauman’s Liquid Modernity. Bergamo Conference on Curriculum Theory and Classroom Practice, Dayton, Ohio, USA.
  • The (Un)Mindful Welcome of Unexpected Others and Difficult Phenomena in Picturebooks. IRSCL Congress (International Research Society for Children’s Literature), York University, Toronto, Canada.
  • Learning Through a Levinasian Facing of Artwork and Shunyata (Emptiness). CSSE Congress (Canadian Society for the Study of Education), Ryerson University, Toronto, Canada.
  • Embodied Curriculum of Sound: Using Our Breath, Voices, and Silence to Create Peaceful Internal and External Environments. Eight Biennial Provoking Curriculum Conference, McGill University, Montreal, Canada.


  • Possibilities in Transformative Learning: Facing Radically Passive Teachers Including Artwork, the Breath, and Shunyata (Emptiness). Transformative Learning Network Conference, Pacific Lutheran University, Tacoma, Washington, USA.
  • Enhancing Well-Being in Just 3 Minutes: Implementing Mindful Practices. York Centre for Education and Community Summer Institute, York University, Toronto, Canada.
  • Just 3 Minutes: Implementing Meditation in the Classroom. Teaching in Focus Conference, York University, Toronto, Canada.


  • Living in the Ampersand: A Response to the NFB Documentary ‘Living in the Hyphen’. York Graduate Students in Education Conference, York University, Toronto, Canada.
  • Digital Capital and Identity in ESL Students. York Graduate Students in Education Conference, York University, Toronto, Canada.

Fellowships & Internships:

  • SSHRC (Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada) Post-doctoral Fellowship, 2019-2021
  • Kenneth and Sylvia Marantz Fellowship for Picturebook Research, Kent State University, Ohio, U.S.A., 2017
  • Research Internship: Knowledge Mobilization Unit, Faculty of Graduate Studies, & Community Partner (Kundalini Yoga Wellness & Health Association), York University, Toronto, Canada, 2017


  • Graduate Student Wellness Initiative Fund, 2019 (to co-organize and host a Wellness Retreat for graduate students in education)
  • SSHRC Doctoral Scholarship, 2018-2020
  • Susan Mann Dissertation Scholarship, 2018-2019
  • Ontario Graduate Scholarship, 2017-2018
  • 150Canada@York University Special Project Funding, 2017 (to co-organize and host a pan-university interdisciplinary graduate students conference)
  • York University Graduate Scholarship, Doctoral Tier, 2016-2017
  • Ontario Graduate Scholarship, 2013-2014


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